Training…? That’s Funny – I’ve Just Learned Something New Today!

Training… that’s funny – I just learned something

Machines and fun… don’t exactly necessarily go hand in hand.

Think of a machine – it’s likely to be something that someone uses to get a job done. So, generally work related. And work is… Boring. Unless you happen to have an exciting and creative job like we do.

Ideally, a machine would be intuitive to use, and at Innovolo, whenever we get asked to design anything machine-like, one of the things we strive for is intuitiveness. You try and make it so anyone could use it (safely).

However, there are some machines that are inherently complex. Unfortunately, try as you might, you can’t make the MRI scanner intuitive to use. And although cars are easier and easier to use now, you still need inducting into that black art of navigating the great outdoors and traffic lights and roundabouts.

So, product training is necessary.

So we throw together a quick instruction leaflet, give the first user a quick demo, then it’s ‘sink or swim, Buster’. And the poor hapless user has a go, messes up, has another go, wastes more time and effort, and gradually by learning from mistakes, eventually learns how to operate the machine easily, efficiently and safely – hopefully without wrecking the machine in the process.

There has to be a better way than this. Yes, there is a learning curve, but there has to be a way to steepen that learning curve so you get competence quicker and cheaper.

So, training has to include some core principles to be effective:

  • The Delivery – How the training is delivered is crucial. Adding some humour always helps, but ultimately, you have to attract the attention of the learners, gain their interest for the duration of the training, keep them engaged and ensure they are motivated to go and try out what they have learned. You can’t do that with a manual or a dry PowerPoint running by itself.
  • The Visuals – Apparently 65% of people are visual learners, so it’s important to get some relevant visuals in there. Forget stock photos. How about animations of the task? Keep the text to a minimum – and here, I’m guilty as charged here.
  • Tell a Story – how about running a comic? Or tell a story in the form of a video? Some of the most effective training sessions don’t actually feel like training at all, but effectively get the principles over in a subliminal way.

Oh, and by the way, Innovolo don’t offer product training by itself – we’re not the experts, but we do know the products being developed, and we partner with other specialist training providers to help provide a full package of product development.

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[…] the innovolo website they write “Apparently 65% of people are visual learners, so it’s important to get some […]

Making a product intuitive to use should indeed be at the core of every innovation project. I am happy to see you recognize this.

Any new product development venture must keep in mind the usability of the product. The end user must always be kept in mind.

The best product design is one that anyone can get familiar with quickly and safely. Indeed there will always be some learning curve to it.

I find the idea of making the process of learning a fun one to be a good problem solution. The end user should never feel like they are in class lol.

Professional user manual developers should be involved in every step of a physical product development. It leads to a good user manual in the end.

With some good idea generation, interesting ways to help users learn how to use products can be found. I thank you for the fun read.

It’s much better to create ideas that would be easy for people to adopt. It should be at the center of all innovations.

New product ideas that take the consumers a lot of time to learn how to use are never advisable. It could spell doom for a new product.

Idea commercialisation can be greatly hindered by something as simple as a product that is too complex. Simplicity is key.

I am happy to see Innovolo do so much for the innovation sector. This has really grown innovation in Cornwall.

Every single New product development in the UK ought to have simplicity of use as its drive. It is integral to the success of any new product.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x